The Libertines’ Anthems For Doomed Youth - What You Need To Know
After an 11-year wait The Libertines are back with their long-awaited third album Anthems For Doomed Youth. It hits shelves today (September 11th) and is available to preview and purchase on the right-hand side of the page, here is everything you need to know about the band’s long-awaited comeback…
A little background…
It’s been 11 years since The Libertines last released an album and a lot has happened since then. The band’s original line-up of co-frontmen Pete Doherty and Carl Barat, bassist John Hassall and drummer Gary Powell parted ways at the end of 2004, although Doherty had not toured with them for a number of months before that. In the years in between Barat and Powell formed The Dirty Pretty Things, Doherty recorded a number of solo albums - some on his own, some with Babyshambles - while Hassall was enjoying the quiet life in Denmark.
Five years passed until the band were tempted out of retirement in 2010 to play Reading and Leeds Festivals and though many hoped this would lead to a full reunion, the reuniting turned out to be short-lived and the band splintered again soon afterwards and it seemed that this would be the end. For good this time.
But, four years later, the band were tempted back together once more, this time to play a huge headline show in London’s Hyde Park, a show that was followed by a small UK tour and then news that the band were indeed writing new songs and had retreated to work on their new album.
This being The Libertines everyone held their breath for news that the sessions had fallen apart, but they haven’t, instead we’ve got a new album Anthems For Doomed Youth to talk about.
Who’s Producing It?
Having worked with The Clash guitarist Mick Jones on their other records, a man whose production style is more mentoring and pressing record rather than spending much time on anything, the band took the unusual move of opting for Jake Gosling, a man best known for producing and co-writing with the likes of Ed Sheeran, One Direction and Christina Perri.
But, it has to be said, any thoughts that Gosling’s past as a smooth hitmaker might take the edge off the band will soon prove unfounded; the recording sounds just as ramshackle as it ever did.
Any Special Guests?
Nope. Just the reunited four.
What Does It Sound Like?
Lyrically it’s typically strident, Doherty’s words about his drug use and struggles with addiction is almost shocking in its candour, while Barat, who himself has struggled with addiction and depression, gets plenty of his own demons off his chest. Regretful, lovelorn and tinged with a deep, deep sadness.
Musically it owes a lot to the latter days of The Clash and the scratchier end of post-punk, with reggae lilts and a plenty of groove, there’s less pace and power, but just as much punch.
Does It Deliver?
For fans of the band this album is everything they will have wanted. Doherty and Barat sound focused and sober, but not sober enough to have taken the edge off, with the band’s passion still raging and their lyrical bite still as sharp as ever.
The Libertines’ new album Anthems For Doomed Youth is out now